The southern siren, Deepika Padukone, lead the India Day parade as Grand Marshal in celebration of the Indian Independence Day in New York. Over 50,000 people, mostly Indian-Americans, cheered the over two dozen floats, richly decorated with patriotic themes. Indian ndustrialist Vijay Mallya was the chief guest.
The procession culminated in a cultural show where 89-year old Manna Dey, a popular Indian playback singer of yesteryears, recited some of his renderings.
On behalf of the US government, Raymond Martinez, protocol secretary of President George Bush, attended the Independence Day dinner hosted by Indo-American President Andy Keshav Shenoy.
The Federation of Indian Associations, an umbrella organisation of several cultural and community bodies, organises this parade every year in New York.